[Nintendo Switch] The Forgotten City - Cloud Version Review
Let’s do the time warp again.. and again… and again… Can you escape The Forgotten City? Check out our The Forgotten City – Cloud Version review!
The Forgotten City – Cloud Version is a mystery adventure game of exploration and deduction, and a re-imagining of the critically acclaimed mod that won a national Writers’ Guild award and racked up over 3 million downloads.
Combat is an option, but violence will only get you so far. Only by questioning an intertwined community of colourful characters, cleverly exploiting the time loop, and making difficult moral choices can you hope to solve this epic mystery. Here, your decisions matter. The fate of the city is in your hands.
• Explore an open-world ancient Roman city with historically authentic art, architecture, costumes and customs
• Investigate a gripping, non-linear mystery with multiple endings
• Become entwined in the lives of richly detailed, deeply interactive characters
• Grapple with moral dilemmas which have life-and-death consequences
• Play as whoever you want, by choosing your character’s gender, origin and backstory
• Solve problems with reason, charm, bribery, intimidation, violence, or by cleverly exploiting the time-loop
So I’ve heard about The Forgotten City quite a bit this year. It originally started out as a The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim mod but ended up evolving beyond that, morphing into a game that manages to stand on its own. It was released earlier this year on PlayStation 4, and it’s now out on the Nintendo Switch via Cloud technology.
That makes The Forgotten City – Cloud Version a rarity on Nintendo’s console since there aren’t many games that have gone this route on the console – with Control Ultimate Edition – Cloud Version being another example of the technology. This is my first time experiencing the power of the cloud on Nintendo’s hybrid console, which is why this review will discuss not only The Forgotten City as a game but also how the cloud version performs on Nintendo Switch.
It’s certainly hard to talk about The Forgotten City without spoiling some elements, but I’ll do my best to discuss the concepts at the least. Time Loop games have been all the rage this year, and after The Forgotten City, I understand why. Your character – which you create at the start of your journey – wanders through a portal that takes them back to ancient times. You land in a Roman city that is doomed. All of its citizens have to live by The Golden Rule, which means that if anyone Sins, then everyone will die. When you arrive, you’re taken to see the Magistrate, who tells you someone will sin today and asks you to snuff it out and stop it.
This means you have to explore the city and talk to all of its citizens to discover what is really going on. What happens next is one of the best narrative adventures I’ve experienced in a long time. As you talk to people, you will learn more about their stories and open new narrative options for other people. If you don’t succeed – and you won’t at first – you’ll have to rush to the portal to be teleported back to the beginning of the day, where you get to keep everything you have learned so that you can use this knowledge to find the person that will sin. While there’s some combat in the game, the focus is on the great characters, narrative, and stories of the people in The Forgotten City.
I thought the construction of the world was really good as well. It’s not huge, which is great. It makes it possible to get to meet each person to move the story forward without feeling overwhelmed about the distances you need to travel or the number of characters you have to remember. All of the voice acting is great as well, really helping to build the world and the setting. The game has different endings, and each one feels different and unique. There are several hours of enjoyment to be found in The Forgotten City since there are plenty of quests to complete and many mysteries and hidden secrets around the city.
It’s very obvious I adored The Forgotten City, which means it’s now time to talk about the cloud implementation on the Nintendo Switch. Since this is a cloud-based game, everything is running through servers to stream the game to the Nintendo Switch console. I tried it on a wide variety of connection speeds to get a feel for how the cloud version performs under different circumstances. First off, let’s start with my home connection which is running at 300 Mbps. Other than a tiny bit of lag, there were no issues playing the game either while in Docked or Portable mode and since this is a game that places its focus on the story and exploration, that tiny bit of lag did not impact my enjoyment.
Since I was at my in-laws over the weekend, I figured I might as well give it a go with their connection, which was 40 Mbps. This led to a bit more stuttering and a couple of areas where lag was noticeable when exploring the market district and when looking out at the city from high above. Since I had to travel, the last speed test was with a hotel’s premium wi-fi service. How premium was this wi-fi service? It was around 13 Mbps. As expected, at that internet speed, the game ended up feeling almost unplayable. The game even told me several times that it had to keep reducing the quality of the stream, often making it black and white so I could keep playing! As you can see, the cloud version does try to accommodate all possible internet speeds, but as expected, the higher the internet speed, the better the experience.
Beyond the connection issues, you can’t really pause and walk away or try to suspend your session. If you lose your connection while playing, it just disconnects, losing any unsaved data. The Forgotten City does a good job with its auto-saving, but it still sucks when you lose even a few min of progress and need to repeat dialogue because your connection was not good enough. If too many people are trying to play the game, you might end up running into a queue to access The Forgotten City – Cloud Version, but this didn’t happen that many times.
You should definitely play The Forgotten City since it’s an excellent game. That being said, your enjoyment of The Forgotten City – Cloud Version on Nintendo Switch will greatly depend on how good your connection is. There’s also the whole “the servers might be shut down at some point” scenario, but that’s still far in the future. As long as you have a strong internet connection, you’ll get to enjoy a very special experience on Nintendo’s console. The Forgotten City – Cloud Version is out on Nintendo Switch with a $29.99 asking price.
This The Forgotten City – Cloud Version review is based on a Nintendo Switch copy provided by Dear Villagers.